The Royal Son

God the Father says to Jesus,

The LORD said unto my Lord, Sit at my right hand, until I make your enemies your footstool.

(Psalm 110:1, ESV)

This is a jewel of insight into the relationship between God the Father and God the Son.

I can wrap my mind around a little of the weight of this verse if I think about a child running through the door, black-eyed, bruised, clothes torn.

What would a father do, but run to attend to his child?  And what if the child said he had fought and won against all the bullies who had been tormenting his friends?  What would the father say?  Something with an intention very similiar to,

Sit at my right hand, until I make your enemies your footstool.

But there’s only the smallest of comparisons between my imaginary example and what really happened to the Son of God.

The Father watched His Son die to save friends who weren’t even His friends yet.  Jesus died to save us, that we could become friends of God.

We had nothing to offer God, and yet God still loved us.  Jesus, who is one Person of the triune God, died to atone for our sin.  It is a little as if we all stood around bankrupt and in infinite debt–no seed money to start any new business, and no way even if we already had the seed money to pay off what we owed.  Jesus walked up to the banker to pay off all we owed and to pour His riches (of love, mercy, faithfulness, loyalty, etc.) into our hands.  But we reviled Him as He stepped up to pay for us.  We mocked Him, spit at Him, and laughed at Him as He paid with His life for our debt.

If I had twenty dollars in my pocket and the person ahead of me at the grocery store was twenty dollars short, would I pay for their groceries and put mine back on the shelf?  No, I would not.  But what if I did choose to give the person my money, and that very person jeered at me as I did so?  Would I still donate my twenty dollars?  I most certainly would not!  And this is talking about twenty dollars.

Yet Jesus chose to suffer for our sins–the weight of that is infinite and only an infinite God could carry it–and die in payment for them while we jeered at and tormented Him.  It defies our wildest imagination of how great God’s love could be.

It could have been different.  It could have been that no one wanted to murder Him, that all recognized His willing sacrifice for our sin.  He could have given His life without any human involvement at all.  He is God.

But that isn’t what happened.  A false court, an unrighteous mob, corrupt rulers, and an evil military killed the Son of God.  No one on earth recognized He was giving His life freely.  People either thought He was another victim of the pointless acts of Roman cruelty or they wanted to kill Him.  No one on earth saw the beauty of what He was doing.

Jesus died the worst death that has ever been died.  He had given up living in Heaven for the throes of earth; now He gave up His throne for a cross.  And He won.  He did exactly what the three Persons of the Godhead had wanted to accomplish: He brought salvation to everyone who received Him.  He paid in full.

And what was the reaction of His Father in Heaven?

Sit at my right hand, until I make your enemies your footstool.

The magnitude can’t be underscored enough.  The war has been won, now the Father wants His Son to sit in the highest place of honor while the Father makes famous His Son’s Name over all the earth.

Would you want to be the bully of a boy whose father is coming towards you?

What will it be like for us if we are enemies of the Son of God?  If we dismiss His blood-bought gift of eternal life?  If we mock His sacrifice?

The right hand of the Father is the highest place of honor.  There is no greater honor that could be bestowed upon Jesus than for His Father to give Him this seat.  In it is the finality of what Jesus has accomplished.  The war is won.  Jesus has overcome all evil.  There is no sin that can raise its fist against Him.  He has carried sin to the cross for all who believe in Him, and He has won over the worst consequences of sin: death and Hell.

Yet He is still deeply involved in the lives of His people.  He asked Saul, who was trying to exterminate Jesus’ followers,

‘Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me? It is useless for you to fight against my will.’

(Acts 26:14b, NLT)

Jesus doesn’t ask why Saul is persecuting His people.  He asks why Saul is persecuting Him.  Jesus makes it clear than when anyone hurts a believer, they are hurting Him.

‘I can guarantee this truth: Whatever you failed to do for one of my brothers or sisters, no matter how unimportant [they seemed], you failed to do for me.’

(Matthew 25:45b, GW)

And Stephen, about to be stoned for His belief in Jesus as the Christ (the Messiah), says,

“Look, I see the heavens opened and the Son of Man standing in the place of honor at God’s right hand!” (Acts 7:56b, NLT)

Jesus is found standing when Stephen sees Him.  He is not sitting on the throne but standing.  He is not uninvolved in Stephen’s death, but waiting in anticipation for him.  In His great love, He gives Stephen this vision to show all believers for all time that He is waiting for each one of us and cares about our lives and death.

Although Jesus’ payment for our sin is complete, His activity in our lives is not.  He has sent the Holy Spirit for all who believe in Him, to help them in their journey to Heaven, and He cares about every moment of every day.  He is not on hiatus, though no one in all the world would deserve such rest more than He.

But He is finished breaking the spine of sin and smashing death to bits for all who believe.  He has won, and He is honored at the right hand of the Father forever.  There is no way to imagine how pleased the Father is with Him.  And there is no way to imagine how displeased the Father is with anyone who rejects Him.

No one in their right mind would want to face the father of a child they bullied.  How much worse that we should face the Father of the God we killed.  But this is exactly what everyone will do on the Day of Judgment who has not believed in the Son (and not just an intellectual belief, but a following belief in all He says, with His grace to forgive all our shortcomings).

There is only one way to escape the Father’s wrath.  That is to run to the Son.

It wouldn’t work in my imaginary example to beg forgiveness from the bullied child to turn away the wrath of the father.  A bullied child is very likely not willing to forgive and would like to see the wrath of his father turned on the bully.

But Jesus is willing and able to forgive everything we have ever done against Him, because that is exactly why He came.  When we run to the Son, we find He introduces us to His Father not as murderers who deserve eternal death, but as friends forgiven by His eternal atonement.

Submit to God’s royal son, or he will become angry, and you will be destroyed in the midst of all your activities–for his anger flares up in an instant. But what joy for all who take refuge in him! (Psalm 2:12, NLT)

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Unnested

I grew up outside of city limits, and then in the country, and one thing we always had was trees.  And with trees, birds.  And with birds, baby birds that had fallen out of the nest.

I grew up in the generation that was told baby birds couldn’t be put back in their nest, because their mama wouldn’t feed them.  So we would always be locked between two unpleasant options: taking the baby bird into our garage to spend the night and die in the morning, or leave it outside in hopes the baby bird would somehow make it back into its nest.   Either way, the baby bird always ended up dead.

The first time we found a baby bird and put it in our garage, I was very optimistic. I was sure we could feed it and love on it and that would be enough.  One day, we could release it back into the wild.  But when I woke up the next morning to excitedly greet my baby bird, my parents told me it had died in the night.

I didn’t understand.  Hadn’t we given it a warm habitat?  Wasn’t our water and food good enough for it?  Why had it died?

I was disillusioned enough that one day, when I found a baby bird out on an autumn day, and my mom said we couldn’t do anything to help it, I left it alone in the hopes it would get back into its next, feet and feet above it—which might as well have been miles and miles–somehow.  I came back outside later and found it dead on the cold earth.

It seems to me like what Romans tells us is we’re all like these baby birds.  We’ve all fallen out of the nest.  We’re all in despair, utterly helpless, doomed to die.

People all around the world are trying to invent cures for the human condition.  Whether through medication or psychology or entertainment or “good works” or career opportunities or romance or social networking or starting a family or anything else, we’re failing miserably.  It’s like we’re placing human souls in our own garage of philosophy, using what we reckon will surely help them, but they are as spiritually starved and abandoned under our care as they were before.

Other people have given up on trying to fix other people.  They walk past people who are in the last stages of spiritual death.   They see them floundering, maybe even pleading for help, but they rationalize these people just can’t be helped if they won’t get themselves to the help they need.

Now this is how the world treats people who are unnested, but what about Christians?  How do we treat people who are unnested?  Surely differently, right?  After all, the key to our Christianity is that we are now nested and we see the whole world unnested.  We hurt for those people.  So what do we do to help?

Sadly, sometimes we’re not much more help than the world.  We, having grown up in the world, believe their false tales about how to nest people back to where they belong, and we try to use their methods.

Sometimes we pick up nonChristians, if you will, and try to fix them ourselves.  We try to love on them enough, care for them enough, that they will be fed and well.  But, it just doesn’t work that way.  No matter how hard we try, we wind up with lost people who were hungrier and closer to death than before.

Sometimes we try “tough love” on nonChristians.  We advise them how they can fix their lives to be right with God.  If they would only quit this, do this, try this, they’d find themselves back up in that nest in no time.  But this is no more good than asking a baby bird with no feathers on its wings to fly back up to its nest.

Sometimes we feel justified in leaving lost people alone because, it seems so far as we can tell, God has abandoned them.  After all, why are they on the ground in the first place?  Maybe they got kicked out of the nest.  Maybe even if we could put them back, God wouldn’t take care of them anyway.

. . About the time I was twelve or thirteen, the idea about unnested baby birds was changing.  There was a new, radical idea experts were offering: put the baby bird back in the nest.  The mother might take care of the bird again, and it was the best chance the little bird had.

I remember the first time I knew of my family placing a baby bird back in the nest.  My grandfather climbed up a ladder and put the bird back in the nest.  To my wonder and joy, the mother accepted the baby bird back and began to care for him again.

The one thing, the only thing, I can do as a Christian that will actually help my lost friends, is bring them back to the nest of God.  I can’t climb a ladder, though, and tuck them back into Heaven.  Then again, I didn’t become saved by a Christian carrying back to God.

No Christian picked me up off the ground and put me back into God’s nest.  There’s no way.  Just like I was struggling for survival because I was a little bird, all of us, Christians and nonChristians, are little birds, too.  One little bird can’t carry another little bird to a tree.

What did happen for me is that I found out through the Word of God and Christians in my life that God is not a helpless parent bird, or a parent bird who would reject us even if we did somehow make it back into His nest.  God is actually eager, eager, to receive us back into His kingdom.  But we can’t get there by letting someone carry us away and put us in a cardboard box in a garage.  And we can’t get there by trying to will ourselves to fly back up to Heaven.  What we have to do, and all we have to do, is tweet Him.

True.

God tells us, from Genesis to Revelation–irrevocably, irrefutably recorded in His Word–that when we call on Him, repenting that we fell out of the nest, and ready to live in His Kingdom according to His Authority, He will cup His hands over us and carry us back to His nest.

We tweet, “Lord, help!”

And He is there.  Faster than the fastest internet connection, He is there.

God promises us three times:

And everyone who calls on the name of the LORD will be saved (Joel 2:32a, NIV)

“‘And everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.’” (Peter, quoting Joel, Acts 2:21, NIV)

“Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” (Paul, quoting Joel, from Romans 10:13, NIV)

We can’t get back in the nest on our own or by anybody else rescuing us.  We can only get back in the nest by the rescue of God.  This is the message of salvation.  Not Christians saving nonChristians, but Christians testifying that anyone who sincerely tweets God will be placed back in His nest.

Have you tweeted God?  There is nothing mysterious to the tweeting.  The mystery is that God wants to place us back in His nest.

But He does.

And that’s why my Twitter account is with God.

All those who the Father gives me will come to me. Him who comes to me I will in no way throw out. (Jesus, quoted in John 6:37, WEB)

I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand. (Jesus, quoted in John 10:28, ESV)

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First photograph, baby bird out of nest, by Ben Husmann, profile on http://www.flickr.com/people/benhusmann/

Second photograph, baby birds in nest, by Kyle MacKenzie, profile on http://www.flickr.com/people/kylemackenzie/

Photograph is under Creative Commons License.

See Copyright Page for Bible translation information.

Please watch this.

I don’t have any words but these: please watch this.

Apologetics

“The presentation of apologetics isn’t always popular.” — Ron Carlson & Ed Decker, Fast Facts on False Teachings.

There isn’t any reason why someone should immediately like to be told they are wrong, save one.

One night after visiting an elderly friend, on the verge of fatigue, I turned on the main street out of the neighborhood to get home.  What I didn’t realize until the car lights streamed into my windshield and the horn screamed in my ears was that I had turned into a two-lane, one-way street.  A median separated me from the other two lanes, the two going the right direction.

I was terrified.  I had that second where I wondered if the car was going to stop or barrel right into me. But the car slowed down, and there was a parking lot on the left side I was able to turn into.

I was not mad at the driver for warning me.  I didn’t accuse him (or her–it was too dark to know) of rudeness or inconveniencing me.  Because I was headed straight for big-time disaster, and that driver’s quick reaction had prevented me from a head-on collision that would have been totally my fault.

Apologetics aren’t ever going to popular for people who believe differently, unless for the sake of sparring or for people who like confrontation.  But, though I hate conflict, I am into apologetics.  I don’t want hate mail, I don’t want to be cussed at, and I don’t want to be unpopular.  But I do want people who are headed for eternal disasters to be warned of where they are going.

The stakes are too high to worry about popularity.

But I do worry about popularity.  But, more than my worry about popularity, is my worry for the millions of people who have no idea they are headed for Hell.  I worry, because I used to be one of them.  I don’t want to cause arguments or anger or lose friends.  But, more than not wanting those things, I feel the new longing of my heart is for people to come to know Jesus.  Where I used to see bodies, I am beginning to see souls.  Souls of eternal value.  Souls trapped in the wrong lane, souls that could be snatched away by a head-on collision at any moment.

In Galatians 1:10, Paul, a missionary who could never honestly be accused of trying to win popularity contests (what with public beatings and being the object of riots and escaping from a city by being lowered down the wall in a basket), wrote:

Am I now trying to win the approval of men, or of God? Or am I trying to please men? If I were still trying to please men, I would not be a servant of Christ. (NIV)

This is key: servants of Christ cannot expect to win approval of those who hate Him.  And those who hate Him . . . is everyone who does not know Him.

Anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God. (James 4:4b, NIV)

Remember the words I spoke to you: ‘No servant is greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will persecute you also. If they obeyed my teaching, they will obey yours also. (Jesus, quoted in John 15:20, NIV)

If those who hate God hate His people . . . and if those who hate Him is everyone who does not know Him . . . that’s a huge, vast majority of the world’s population that will hate me if I live my life for and talk about Jesus!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

So why ever would I want to share my faith, then?  Why not hide away in a monastery until I die and go to Heaven?

Because . . . I don’t know whether my waiter will die that night in a car crash.

I don’t know if the grocery store clerk has just been diagnosed with cancer.

I don’t know if the guy who cuts me off in traffic, the woman who butts in front of me in line, the teenage girl whose phone conversation is being broadcasted through the movie theater . . . I don’t know if their souls are safe with Jesus.

I don’t know when people will die . . . but I do know they will face judgment someday, the same judgment I could never stand up to without the blood of Jesus Christ poured out over every second of my life.

And so . . . it becomes plain old stupid for me to worry about whether somebody has cost me to miss the green light or wait five extra minutes with sore feet or not hear the critical point of the plot in a movie.  And it becomes plain old stupid for me to worry about whether they will say mean things to be or walk the other direction when they see me if I share my faith.

What matters is whether or not they follow Jesus.

Carlson and Decker are right–apologetics aren’t always popular.  The topic isn’t even usually popular.  But sharing the Message of Christ has the power to forever change the life of someone else.

When else do I have the chance to change forever the life of anyone?  I could build a mansion for somebody; I could bail them out of debt; I could break them out of prison; I could get them off on charges of murder; I could find their kidnapped loved one; I could serve them for the rest of my life . . but none of those things has the power to change someone’s life forever.

I cannot by any extraordinary act or by any eloquence of language change the life of someone forever.  I can, at best, improve their quality of life as they drive down the wrong lane of traffic, soon to ram into the eternal consequences of a life without salvation.

I cannot do anything to bring about eternal change.  But, by the grace of God, I can be a pointer to eternal change.  Paul says in 1 Corinthians 15:10:

But whatever I am now, it is all because God poured out his special favor on me–and not without results. For I have worked harder than any of the other apostles; yet it was not I but God who was working through me by his grace. (NLT)

Apologetics aren’t popular.  The name is strange, and the ideas hard to communicate to a world driving down the wrong lane.

But killing my pride, killing my fear, killing my laziness, killing my selfishness, and killing my neediness-for-popularity so that I may defend Jesus is totally worth it.  Because Jesus is the only way for anyone to change lanes.

Every day of our life we face death because of Jesus. In this way, His life is seen in our bodies. (2 Corinthians 4:11, NLV)

“I am the Way,” replied Jesus, “and the Truth and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (John 14:6, Weymouth NT)

In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. (John 1:4, NIV)

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Photograph by Kelsey_Love_Fusion, profile on http://www.flickr.com/people/supersonicphotos/

Photograph is under Creative Commons License.

See Copyright Page for Bible translation information.

The book I’m reading: Fast Facts on False Teachings by Ron Carlson & Ed Decker (c) 1994.

Devotion for the day in my Bible was from the incredible book of Jeremiah, a man given insight into the one and only Messiah who would come, at a time apologetics were very unpopular.

How do I get to Heaven?

“Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who commits sin is a slave to sin.  The slave does not remain in the house forever; the son remains forever.  So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed. (John 8:34b-36, ESV)

I am a

slave to sin

and

The slave does not remain in the house forever

I am in the position to be kicked out and spend my eternity in Hell.

But Jesus is no slave.  Jesus

remains forever

1. I am a slave to sin, ready to be kicked out of God’s house.

2. Jesus is the Son of God, always to stay in God’s house.

So can I figure out the last part of the verse from these first two truths?

Not at all!  It sails far beyond the limitations of my logic and lands in the grasses of God’s mercy:

So if the Son sets you free

Jesus wants to set us free!  The first two facts could not in our wildest imagination draw us to the third: Jesus is willing to set us free.

And what does He say about this freedom?

you will be free indeed.

Not that I will be free when I’ve served my sentence.  Not that I will be free when I’ve served “half” my sentence (if such a thing is possible).  Not that I will be free when I realize the full plague I have exposed myself to by my sin.  Not that I will be free when I learn how to carry the immeasurably heavy burden of my sin.

Only that, if Jesus shares His freedom with me, I–me–

will be free indeed.

Christ Jesus goes on my behalf to His Father and asks for full forgiveness for my sins.

This is because, if Jesus accepts me, He intercedes (makes payment for my sin and purifies me) eternally.

Jesus lives forever, he has a permanent priesthood.  Therefore he is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them. (Hebrews 7:24b-25, NIV)

If my eternity as a child of God rather than as a damned slave of sin depends on Christ Jesus’ acceptance of me, then I should spend the rest of my life searching for the way to earn that acceptance, right?

That kind of quest would make sense except for two truths.  First, I am not able to find truth when I am a sinner.  That would be something like a tree trying to figure out how to do algebra.  The Bible describes sinners as dead to the ways of God (see Ephesian 2:4-5).  We can’t be smart enough or good enough to figure out how to earn Jesus’ approval.

Second, I don’t need to go on any quest anyway, because Christ Himself plainly tells the only way we can receive acceptance from Him:

“Come to me, all of you who are weary and loaded down with burdens, and I will give you rest. Place my yoke on you and learn from me, because I am gentle and humble, and you will find rest for your souls, because my yoke is pleasant, and my burden is light.” (Matthew 11:28-30, ISV)

All I have to do is come to Jesus and He will give me employment in His Kingdom as an heir of God, pulling me out of my life as a slave to sin.  And Jesus gives me the only kind of employment that gives rest!  (I don’t think any of us would say that about the jobs we do for earthly employers . . .because if we did, we would feel more refreshed after work rather than less!)

Even though I work for Jesus, it isn’t in my working that I find His acceptance of me.  It’s in my coming.

Jesus promises that if I will come to Him, He will make me fit for the kingdom of God by His blood spilled for me (see Mark 14:24 and Luke 22:20).

And Jesus promises that if I come to Him, He will make me skilled for the kingdom of God by His teaching freely given to me (see Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, and the entire Word of God, see John 1:1-14).

And as long as there is day left (as long as we are alive on earth), Jesus will accept us and give us employment in His kingdom–even if we feel our life is mostly or almost entirely all spent up and wasted (see Matthew 20:1-16).

“If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink! The one who believes in me, as the Scripture has said, will have rivers of living water flowing from his heart.” (John 7:37b-38, ISV)

“I am the bread of life; he who comes to Me will not hunger, and he who believes in Me will never thirst. (John 6:35b, NASB)

“All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will certainly not cast out. For I have come down from heaven, not to do My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me. This is the will of Him who sent Me, that of all that He has given Me I lose nothing, but raise it up on the last day. For this is the will of My Father, that everyone who beholds the Son and believes in Him will have eternal life, and I Myself will raise him up on the last day.”  (John 6:37-40, NASB)

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See Copyright Page for Bible translation information.

The difficulty of persuading someone a loving God does exist and accepts us freely through His Son

Suppose I decide to interview 100 people on how they got to work today.

Most people tell me they drove to work.  A few people told me they took the bus.  One person even tells me he biked!  “Fine, fine,” I say.

But then this rather serene-looking woman walks up.  I ask the regular question, “How did you get to work today?”

She says, “I took a jet.”

I look at her a little funny and say, “No you didn’t.”

She says, “Wait a minute, how do you know I didn’t?”

I say, “Well, I don’t see a jet anywhere.”

She says, “It’s parked just behind the building.  I’ll show it to you if you want.”

I say, “You’ll show me the jet?  That’s real funny.  Really, how did you get here?”

“Really,” she says, “I took a jet.”

I’m getting irritated now.  “Really,” I say, “how did you get here?”

She looks a little surprised.  “I took a jet.  It’s the best way to travel.”

I stick out my lower jaw and I am really getting annoyed.  “It is not the best way to travel,” I say.

“How do you know?” she asks.

“Because I don’t travel that way!” I shout.  “And besides, you do not have a jet!  There’s no way.  Your clothes came from a thrift shop and you didn’t even get a decent haircut!  YOU DON’T HAVE A JET!”

She crinkles her forehead.  “. . . What do my clothes and haircut have to do with me taking a jet?  Oh!  You mean I’m not rich enough?”  She laughs.  “You’re right about that.  I don’t have any money to pay for a jet.  No, no.  The jet is free.”

I narrow my eyes.  “The jet is free.  Yeah, right.  Next thing you’re going to tell me you take a rocket ship back home.”

“No,” she says confidently.  “Just the jet.”

I sigh and set my jaw.  “I’m going to ask you this question again.  How did you get to work—AND DON’T SAY A JET!

She blinks a few times.  “Well, I can’t really say anything then.”

“Fine!” I say.  “You’re disqualified! You don’t get to be in the statistics I’m writing!  SO THERE!

She blinks a few more times.

“. . . Ok,” she says.  “But it still doesn’t change the fact that I got here in a jet.”

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The idea of a loving God who freely gives us salvation through the sacrifice of His only Son on a cross . . . seems more impossible to believe than that an ordinary woman could arrive to work on a free jet.  And yet . . . the free gift of Jesus’ payment for our sin because of His vast love is the foundation of the Bible and the heartbeat of Christianity.

Paul explains our God well:

“The God who made the world and everything in it is the Lord of heaven and earth and does not live in temples built by hands. And he is not served by human hands, as if he needed anything, because he himself gives all men life and breath and everything else. From one man he made every nation of men, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he determined the times set for them and the exact places where they should live. God did this so that men would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from each one of us. ‘For in him we live and move and have our being.'” (Acts 17:24-28a, NIV)

And how we can have a miraculous, unthinkable, unbelievable friendship with Him because of His unimaginable determination to open the only Way possible back to Him:

Once you were dead because of your disobedience and your many sins. You used to live in sin, just like the rest of the world, obeying the devil—the commander of the powers in the unseen world. He is the spirit at work in the hearts of those who refuse to obey God. All of us used to live that way, following the passionate desires and inclinations of our sinful nature. By our very nature we were subject to God’s anger, just like everyone else.

But God is so rich in mercy, and he loved us so much, that even though we were dead because of our sins, he gave us life when he raised Christ from the dead. (It is only by God’s grace that you have been saved!) For he raised us from the dead along with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms because we are united with Christ Jesus. So God can point to us in all future ages as examples of the incredible wealth of his grace and kindness toward us, as shown in all he has done for us who are united with Christ Jesus.

God saved you by his grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God. Salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done, so none of us can boast about it. For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago. (Ephesians 2:1-10, NLT)

Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death. For what the law was powerless to do in that it was weakened by the sinful nature, God did by sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful man to be a sin offering. And so he condemned sin in sinful man, in order that the righteous requirements of the law might be fully met in us, who do not live according to the sinful nature but according to the Spirit.  (Romans 8:1-4, NIV)

Find out more from God Himself . . .

Listen to the Bible

Read the Bible (this link starts at John 1)

Find out more from Christ-followers . . .

Find out more, and talk to a person (if you want)

Explore your thinking

Watch clips of Christian answers to lots of questions

How to become a Christian

Read answers to questions about Jesus

Short videos investigating Christianity

Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis

The Problem of Pain by C.S. Lewis

I Don’t Have Enough Faith to be an Atheist by Geisler & Turek

Testing Christianity’s Truth Claims: Approaches to Christian Apologetics by Gordon Lewi

Can We Trust the Gospels? by Mark D. Roberts

The Case for Faith, The Case for Christ, and The Case for a Creator by Lee Strobel

Hard Questions, Real Answers by William Lane Craig